Author: Lioness Editor: Lioness

5

 

“Shall I bring the Duke?”

 

Her handmaiden understood Isabella’s meaning and asked quickly. Isabella took a deep breath and nodded her head.

 

“That’s right. Bring him to me as soon as possible.”

 

“Yes.”

 

The maid bowed at her with a polite clasp of her hands. And as the maid was about to go out of Isabella’s room to fulfill the said order, she heard a voice outside the door.

 

– Your Majesty, the Queen, the Duke of Durklen has asked for an audience with you.

 

“Father? He came at the good time. Let him come in.”

 

Isabella stood up from her seat with delight. At the same time, the maid walked occasionally toward the bedroom door. And as soon as she opened the door, a stout old aristocrat entered. It was Isabella’s father, Duke Theorvan Durklen.

 

“I have arrived inside, Your Majesty.”

 

The Duke greeted his daughter politely. Isabella also bowed her head to receive his greeting, and then she hurriedly opened her mouth.

 

“Welcome, Father. Even if you didn’t come here, I was supposed to send someone to pick you up, Father”

 

“Oh, was it?”

 

The Duke looked puzzled for a moment at Isabella’s words, then smiled and sat down. Isabella also went back to her seat again, and bit her mouth tightly. Meanwhile, she took a few steps back, when the maid came over and set her refreshments on her table.

 

“You can go out now.”

 

Isabella waved her hand as soon as her handmaiden backed away. The maid hurried out of the bedroom at her command. And only when they was left alone did she raise the teacup with the Duke in front of her.

 

“… Why do you have a bad expression?”

 

The duke’s tone of voice changed comfortably. There was no one to see and no one to hear them anyway.

 

“Did you visit him, the Grand Duke? It seems like you were treated badly and kicked out.”

 

“Kicked out, who said I was kicked out?!”

 

“Hmm…  if you weren’t kicked out, then you were treated badly, right?”

 

The duke groaned and asked his daughter. The moment Isabella was furious and tried to refute his words once more, the duke’s golden eyes darkened as if they were deeply immersed.

 

“Why do you have to like that Grand Duke when you are being treated poorly like that?”

 

“… ”

 

“Within time, that Haven Guinters, do you think his heart will turn to you? And after he ascends the throne, do you really think that he will treat you as his wife? Are you still holding on to such vain hopes albeit that you’re being neglected until now? You’re being foolish, Isabella.”

 

The duke’s voice was dull, but at the same time he harbored anger. He must have been angry that his daughter was clinging to him unilaterally. Isabella chewed her lips, not responding.

 

The resentment that had subsided for a while came up again and tears came out. The duke, seeing her eyes reddened, bit his tongue, and spoke again.

 

“There are many men in the royal family. How many people aspire to be your husband?”

 

Isabella couldn’t stand her anger and raised her voice towards the Duke, who clicked his tongue and spoke with her bruised jaw.

 

“Don’t say that kind of words! I didn’t kill Livius to get married again with a same insignificant idiot…”

 

“Shh! Can’t you keep your mouth shut!”

(TN: Oh no, I got angrier the moment I knew this…)

 

The duke hurriedly shouted and cut off Isabella’s words. He then jumped out of his seat and walked towards her bedroom door. Isabella pursed her lips and she didn’t say anything until her father-in-law returned from checking if the door was unlocked.

 

“How can you be so frivolous! What if someone listened to what you said now?”

 

After making sure that no one was listening outside her, the duke came back and scolded her sharply. This time, she had nothing to say, even as Isabella, the queen, so she was silent. He implied that she should never spit out even in an accident what she had said a while ago.

 

Livius Guinters.

 

The man who was her husband and the former king.

 

Because his death must have been an entirely unfortunate ‘accident’.

 

“… I’m sorry. Because of my upset heart, I made a mistake without realizing it.”

 

Isabella kept her mouth shut for a while before she belatedly brought her lame excuse. The duke opened his eyes and looked at her.

 

“What rudeness did the duke do to you again?”

 

“As always, yes. Besides, Flitta, that girl intervened today.”

 

Isabella found Haven’s apathy for his young daughter, Flitta.

 

As she was complaining about her pain and flirted in front of his daughter’s eyes, Haven was more indifferent to her because he cared about his daughter from a father’s point of view.

 

She blamed Flitta for her father’s indifference towards her. She didn’t even consider that she had been rude to visit an ownerless mansion.

 

In addition, she ignored the fact that Flitta was hiding behind her nanny’s skirt because she was very scared at her, let alone ‘flirting’.

 

“At the time, he wasn’t bringing the kid. After all, she was a kid he wouldn’t even remember. So it would have been neat if I had just killed the woman and his child at the same time…”

 

Isabella let out a sigh as she sighed. Then the duke put down the teacup and shook his head resolutely.

 

“You know, that was impossible. The royals who were with him at the time, especially the Marquis of Forkin, went with him, so how could we deceive his eyes and get things done? Now that you are in the position of the previous queen, you are with us, but he was originally loyal to the royal family.”

 

Marquis Warren Forkin. His loyalty to the royal family could be described as fanatical. A marquis that prioritizes the safety of the royal family over the safety of their own family and goes beyond attachment to the royal bloodline.

 

He is someone who even looks good.

 

How would he have felt when he saw Haven’s ‘Blood’? Even if half of that blood belonged to a lowly common woman, it didn’t matter to the Marquis of Forkin. The other half of the blood. Only the blood of the royal family matters.

 

It was impossible to kill Haven’s child in front of such a person. Even if it’s about dealing with the woman who gave birth to that child.

 

But she didn’t have to get her hands dirty to take the life of a lowly human. Just by threatening her child in moderation, didn’t she get scared like a cat and trembled?

 

After the Duke lightly brushed off his memories of his times with that lowly woman, he again gave Isabella attention.

 

“Anyway, you should always be careful, Isabella. Don’t even bring the words about the previous king out of your mouth. No, that never happened in the first place. It’s just an unfortunate ‘accident’ that happened to the previous king. Keep that in mind.”

 

“Yes.”

 

Isabella answered meekly. The duke, who was looking at his daughter, softly clicked his tongue again.

 

‘Putting her on the queen throne should satisfy her.’

 

He had heard through her wife that she had a crush on Haven this time. But he didn’t take it seriously. He didn’t know that his daughter’s ambitions were far greater than that of most people. So, he thought that nothing could be more important to her than her position as queen. In his opinion, Isabella obeyed the command to become queen.

 

But who would have imagined? That her own daughter’s ambition and greed would be more terrifying than he expected.

 

So, not only the queen’s seat but also the man she loved.

 

It was fortunate that his daughter’s scheme to kill the previous king by disguising it as an accidental death was known in advance. She was impulsive and light-hearted, and if she had acted on her own, she would have leaked evidence somewhere.

 

Fortunately, the duke intervened and was able to make it a ‘perfectly’ accidental. And until now, several years have passed, no one has noticed. Even the Grand Duke, the younger brother of the previous king.

 

‘Well, it’s not really that bad. Rather, you could call it an opportunity.’

 

The Duke remembered Haven Guinters, who was sharper and stronger than his brother. It was the grand duke who was secretly caught in the process of raising Isabella as the queen. It was true that his existence was more like a king than a king, was reluctant.

 

‘So it might be better on the same side.’

 

If she could put him on the throne and Isabella would become queen again according to his laws, she would be the perfect ending if Isabella could penetrate his heart.

 

The duke cleared his mind and nodded his head.

 

“Anyway, let’s try to press the grand duke again. If not, there will be a memorial service for the 6th anniversary of the previous king soon, so it wouldn’t be a bad idea to bring up the marriage story to the Grand Duke at that time. Let Marquis Forkin move around a bit.”

 

“Really? Please do exactly like that, Father.”

 

Isabella smiled and her eyes lit up. It seemed inconsiderate that the memorial service of her deceased husband was approaching.

 

* * *

 

Squeak, squeak.

 

Rosé turned her head away, startled by the sound of the rat’s cry. She saw a little mouse biting a piece of bread and running away.

 

“Ah…”

 

It seems that it took the black bread she had left on the bed and went away. The bread was so hard that it was just soaked in water and then taken away by the mice.

 

“… I should just starve then.”

 

Rosé smiled quietly and muttered despite the fact that the bread that was today’s breakfast and lunch was taken away. If someone else ate instead of her, that was enough.

 

She drank water to fill her hungry stomach and left the room. Her musty smell filled the hallway, perhaps because she was wet from the rain.

 

The inn where Rosé was staying was so messed up that it was embarrassing to call it an ‘inn’.

 

But for her, who didn’t have enough money, it was a place that was adequate, no, beyond what she could imagine.

 

As Rosé was going down the stairs, she heard the owner’s voice from the first floor. She reflexively stopped halfway down the stairs, giving her a puzzled look.

 

Staying at the inn for the past few days, instead of ordering food every day, she bought hard black bread and ate it with water to replace her meal. So it was natural for the owner to be displeased at her. In addition to lodging expenses, food expenses for those staying are the main source of income for the inn.

 

However, she did not have enough leisure time to prepare her meals every day, so she had no choice but to buy bread every time she went out and came in despite the owner’s glance.

 

Rosé was embarrassed to face the owner, so she hesitated for a moment, then sighed and tried to go down the stairs again.

 

At that moment, the voice of the employee who was talking with the owner sounded a little clearer.

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